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This Year’s Polar Plunge Is Do-It-Yourself — But You Can Still Raise Money For Chicago Families In Need

This year, participants don't have to dive into Lake Michigan. They can jump into snow in a bathing suit or have a bucket of cold water dumped on them.

The Chicago Polar Bear Club is raising money to help three Chicago families before the Polar Plunge.
Provided/Doug Goldrick
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CHICAGO — The Chicago Polar Bear Club’s Polar Plunge fundraiser is turning into a do-it-yourself event due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The event — which typically sees hundreds of people dive into a freezing-cold Lake Michigan in January — raises money for local families in need. But the pandemic has made it unsafe for crowds to gather, so organizers are asking people to participate but to take their dip alone for this year’s Polar Plunge.

And this year, participants don’t have to dive into Lake Michigan, according to a Polar Bear Club news release. They should take a safe plunge in whatever way they can, rather that be through jumping into snow in a bathing suit, having a bucket of cold water dumped on them, or anything else that’s cold.

Participants can plunge any time through Jan. 30 and post video or photos of their chilly dip on social media with the hashtags #CPBC2021 and #PlungeWhereYouare.

People can register for free online and set up a fundraising page.

There will be a virtual recap event Jan. 30. The Polar Bear Club will provide an update on the families being supported through this year’s fundraiser, and there will be raffle prizes.

More information is available online.

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